568 Main StreetHudson, MA, 01749Phone: 978-562-9182
World War II re-enactments, tank demos just part of what’s on tap at this museum
The museum is now open! Wednesdays-Sundays from 10am-5pm. Advance ticketing is preferred - Please call or visit our website.
In addition to the extraordinary collection of military vehicles, tanks, aircraft, vintage race cars and automobiles, the American Heritage Museum hosts an exciting array of living history events, from tank demonstration days to World War II re-enactments. New to the museum is a video exhibit on 9/11, featuring the recollections of two F-16 pilots who tried to intercept hijacked Flight 93. The museum’s chronological exhibits on America’s fight to preserve freedom go from the Revolution to the current War on Terror, with detailed dioramas on the campaigns of World Wars I and II, Korea, Vietnam and the Gulf War. Interspersed throughout are the vehicles so crucial to those campaigns. The museum also runs tank-driving programs at a separate training ground.
Fun for all ages at this exciting multi-obstacle ropes course
Everybody gets into the fun and makes memories at Jordan’s Beanstalk Adventure Ropes Course, where 30 exciting challenges include zig-zag beams, crisscross walks, angled rope ladders, spaghetti hand lines and a Sky Rail zip line. A full-body harness and sling line will keep you safely connected while you soar and climb your way through two levels (12 and 24 feet) of intriguing obstacles. And kids under 48 inches tall don’t have to miss out on the fun! In the smaller but just as special BeanSprout course, the platforms are under three feet from the ground so kids can explore, building their confidence and coordination, while adult chaperones are nearby to offer a helping hand when needed.
Amesbury Welcomes Tubers
The Amesbury Sports Park at 12 South Hunt Road in Amesbury has the steepest snow tubing hill in New England, with 6 to 10 tubing lanes open, depending on conditions. The hills are serviced by a conveyor belt lift that guests stand on and ride to the top, and a handle tow lift. Night tubing under lights is offered all season. Children must be at least 4 years old to tube. “Ride the Frozen Rapids” allows up to 10 people to board a white water raft and zip down the hill. Snowmaking ensures coverage. Open Thursday through Sunday. Phone: 978-388-5788.
Enjoy a 20th-Century Diplomat’s House & Gardens
Stevens Coolidge House & Gardens at 153 Chickeering Road in North Andover was an early-20th-century estate with expansive and beautiful gardens. (Originally, the estate was the summer home of Helen and John Gardner Coolidge—a diplomat and a nephew to Isabella Stewart Gardner—from 1914 to 1962.) The Trustees of Reservations, which preserves and manages the property, did an improvement project in 2020-2021 that included new and improved gardens, indoor classrooms, retail space, an event lawn, and revised interior spaces. This is a fine year to visit. Admission tickets must be bought online in advance, for a specific time slot. 978-689-9105
This zoo specializes in exhibits where visitors can touch, be active and learn
The very cool things to do at the Stone Zoo start, of course, with the animal exhibits, from flamingos and alligators in the Caribbean Coast to spider monkeys and sloths in the Windows to the Wild. (And don’t forget snow leopards, otters, monkeys, yaks, gila monsters ...) At the Animal Discovery Center, kids can marvel at a honeybee hive or feel a lizard’s skin; in the Yukon Creek, they can follow animal tracks (including those of black bear brothers Smoky and Bubba) to an abandoned logger’s cabin. There’s a great playground, a children’s train, Jungle Fun Ride, Turbo Tubs and, in a nature play area, young visitors can climb into an oversized bird’s nest. Group behind-the-scenes tours and rental strollers are available.
Here Lies Hawthorne
Pay your respects to celebrated authors and thinkers at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Concord, the sylvan resting place of some 10,000 souls. Stroll the garden-like grounds on a self-guided walking tour. Literary buffs may flock to "Author's Ridge" atop the highest hill, which marks the modest family plots of Henry Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Emerson, and Louisa May Alcott. "The Knoll" houses specially consecrated Jewish burial grounds. "Mourning Victory", or the Melvin Memorial, honors three brothers killed in the Civil War. While here, explore nearby Walden Pond or the Wayside, home to both Hawthorne and Alcott. Self-guided tour books available. 978-318-3233
Stroll Charming Downtown Gloucester
The town of Gloucester, on the northern edge of Massachusetts Bay, is historically a rugged fishing town known for its iconic statue of Man at the Wheel (and for its role as the base of fearless fishermen in the movie “Perfect Storm”). It is also a great place to visit if you love sweet New England downtowns. Gloucester’s HarborWalk is a one-mile walking path through town from Gloucester House to Stage Fort Park. From St. Peter’s Square on Rogers Street, the HarborWalk passes the working waterfront to Harbor Loop. The Walk then turns up to City Hall, then turns back down through the historic district to St. Peter’s Square. (photo by David Gleeson)
Artist Colony Is Vibrant in Gloucester
Rocky Neck Art Colony in Gloucester is the oldest working art colony in the country, and has been luring artists to its picturesque shores for more than 150 years. Today the area is still home to many working artists and to galleries showing paintings in all media, as well as batik, photography, jewelry, prints, sculpture, ceramics, and fine gifts. A convenient walking tour of Rocky Neck, along East Main Street, includes information about three dozen galleries and studios on the Neck. A new book about the artists and history of the region, titled Rocky Neck Art Colony 1850-1950, by Judith Curtis, is available. 978-515-7004.